Thursday, February 10, 2011

Roasted Beet and Goat Cheese Salad

My husband and I were young and in love, eating miraculous food and drinking amazing wine. It was our first trip to Napa Valley. We stopped for lunch at Bistro Jeanty, and I ordered this salad. It was my first time eating roasted beets in a salad, and I never forgot how delicious it was. This is the perfect starter salad, or make it a light lunch with some crusty bread.

Beets are a winter veggie, so find them now, in the store or at the farmer's market, while they are in season and the price is right. Any salad greens mix will work: from delicate baby spring greens or butter lettuce to hearty spinach or the more bitter frisee or arugula. Goat cheese is available almost everywhere - pick some up next time you're at Trader Joe's! As for the dressing, I like the most basic combination of olive oil and balsamic vinegar. You can experiment with citrus or fruit vinegars too.

Roasted Beet and Goat Cheese Salad

  • 1 pound of beets, red or golden
  • 1 package of soft goat cheese
  • 1 bag salad mix
  • olive oil
  • balsamic vinegar
  • salt and pepper
  1. Wash the beets and remove the green stems. I also like to nip off the little root tail, so the beet is pretty spherical. On a large piece of aluminum foil, nestle the beets together and drizzle with olive oil. Wrap the foil over and around the beets so they are sealed in. Bake at 375 for about an hour. To test for doneness, squeeze the foil package - the beets should feel tender under pressure.
  2. Open the foil and let the beets cool so you can handle them. You might want to wear plastic gloves for this: with a paring knife, remove the skin from the beets. It should peel right off, and you may not even need the knife, you can just grab and pull. The beets will stain your hands shocking red for a while if you don't wear gloves, but it will come off before work in the morning!
  3. Cut the beets into your preferred shape: julienne, slices, whatever you like for bite-sized eating. Set aside to finish cooling.
  4. Wash your greens, plate them, and dress with oil and vinegar. Sprinkle with a tablespoon or two of crumbled goat cheese and a handful of beets. I like to add a little more vinegar at this point. Add salt and pepper to taste.
If there are any beets left over, I like to eat them the next day ... with oil, vinegar and goat cheese. Sometimes lettuce just gets in the way.

No comments:

Post a Comment